Posted by: katlea611 | September 29, 2008

Stories to Inspire

Here are some stories from other homeschooling families.  Sometimes, it’s just nice to read the experiences and stories, be inspired and just learn from them.  🙂

Squeezing in Reading Time

Like many families, my children’s learning gifts are in different areas, as are their inner-clock for prime learning time. For example, my son conquered phonics and learning to read with great gusto and now enjoys reading anything and everything, especially in the mornings. Doing school before noon is a goal he can readily accomplish. My daughter, however, needs to be coaxed and prodded with her phonics and reading and it seems to be a real chore to her during the day. That is until bedtime, when she cherishes looking through books and being read to (which we’ve always done). So to encourage her phonetic learning and reading advancement I set a small, attainable reading goal for her and said when she accomplished that we would install a special wall-mounted reading light by her bed signifying that she is a reader.

When the day came there was great excitement. I searched high and low until I found the perfect (and economical) light that suited her personality and complemented her room. Now we do just a short phonics lesson during the day and maybe a short story for her to read and save the rest until bed time. We get cuddled up on her bed with the books she has picked out and ones I’ve picked out introducing new sounds or words. She reads the ones she has mastered and we take turns reading and sounding out words in the new books. She enjoys the success so much that I now catch her in the daytime reading through books we read the night before. She is receptive and eager to learn and it is a joyful way to spend time together before she goes to bed.

~K. Spencer~

Toddler Involvement

When my son was very young we realized that he was “high energy”; the term we prefer to use rather than “hyperactive” or ADHD.  As the time came to begin homeschooling him, we were already homeschooling his older sister. Getting him to sit still for ABC’s and other lessons that involved writing was next to impossible.

Then one day, I realized that, when he had a snack while he was working, he was much calmer and more focused on his work.  I began giving him (HEALTHY) snacks like carrots, apple slices, or banana chips — anything with a crunch.  Sure enough, he was using his excess nervous energy to chomp his “crunchies” while getting his work done. This helped tremendously, but he still couldn’t stay put long enough to finish all his lessons.

So, I began using a timer that let him work for twenty minutes and then “play”, which consisted of doing something physical like shooting basketball, jumping rope, or running laps, for ten minutes.  This combination of keeping his excess energy spent using the two methods, made it possible to get all his work done each day- usually even before kids in public school got out for the day, though we started later.  It also made it very easy to work with his sister because I no longer had to constantly be “on him” to stay on his work — I could focus on her as well.

He’s in the second grade now and doing great.  We still use the “snack distraction” and he still gets the timer breaks, but now, we’re up to being able to sit for nearly an hour, focused, and he only needs the snacks later in the day- after a while at work. This has allowed us to be successful at homeschooling and has allowed us to stick to our beliefs about not medicating him because of high energy. Hope this helps someone!

~T. Green~


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